Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Heading home after visiting family is bittersweet. I'm anxious to get home and sort a week's worth of mail, and to get all the laundry done, but I hate leaving people I love so much. I'll miss them as soon as we get on the road.
When our daughter graduated from college and got a job in Pennsylvania it was a big adjustment for me. We would spend a weekend with her in her little apartment and then I would cry for the first hour of the trip home. That was eight years ago now so I've adjusted a bit to the distance between us, and the tears do not last quite that long - but the car is still very quiet for the first hour as I slowly come to terms with the fact that it will be weeks before I see her and her family again. It's one of the heartbreaking aspects of being a parent - letting them go and allowing them to become fully independent - still needing them ourselves, but accepting the fact that they no longer need us. We bring these babies - these little miracles - into our lives, love them until it hurts, raise them to be strong and capable adults, and then... let them go. What a difficult thing that is!
But it's life and it is the reality of parenthood so it's something we all deal with in one way or another. I don't think our children fully understand that love until they have children of their own, and then they're already in the same cycle themselves. In a very short time they will be watching their own little ones grow up and leave them. And of course, that's just what we want for them, experiencing this miracle of parenthood themselves.
Life is a mystery in many ways - and sometimes its really hard! And yet I wouldn't trade any of it for all the wealth and possessions in the world. I may not have a lot of money, but those children have made me a very rich woman.
Time to hit the road now....